TL; DR version:
I’ve been told I should have at least a partial, if not a full, hysterectomy. Help me think through the situation…at least, according to my doctor’s recommendation.
I have a large (12cm) ovarian cyst on my right ovary, which is probably the remnant of a ruptured hemorrhagic ovarian cyst that put me in the hospital last November. I posted about it a bit after the hospitalization and a little more in another poster's thread about [laparoscopic surgery](http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=608464&highlight=hysterectomy). However, I am no longer "not freaked out," as I stated in my last post on that thread.
In addition, I have a large number of medium-sized fibroid tumors in my uterus. My mother had these, and had a hysterectomy around the same age as I am now, perhaps a little older.
Here’s the thing:
I don’t want to do this. I get that the cyst has to come out - it’s increased in size since my ultrasound in May to my ultrasound yesterday. But the fibroids haven’t caused me much problems with the exception of heavy periods with lots of cramping, which I’ve developed a good routine to deal with.
I don’t want to lose my ovary, although I know that if I still have the other one, I will still have a functioning estrogen factory and my need to take artificial hormones will be decreased.
I don’t want to lose my uterus, even though I have no intention of having children. I don’t know why, it’s not rational, I just don’t, okay?
The doctor has informed me that a cystectomy is really only done for women who want to preserve their internal organs for possible later childbirth. He knows I don’t want children, so his response is “let’s just take them out.”
I’m freaking out and not thinking clearly, so I’m asking my fellow Dopers for assistance.
I don’t even know what questions to ask, where to go for non-woo information (I Googled and found the Hysterectomy Education and Resource Services foundation [HERS Foundation]), and the site just scared me to death. Anyone know if that’s woo, legit, a combination?
Do I get a second opinion?
I’ve had blood tests and other tests to rule out ovarian/uterine cancer, and all the markers are within normal limits and not indicative of cancer. Will the mass be biopsied, and a decision made to do a complete removal (including the left ovary) while I’m still under and unable to discuss options?
What do I do? What do I ask? Where do I go for advice that’s not scare-mongering but at the same time not too clinical?
I realize intellectually that millions of women, including Doper women, have had partial and full hysterectomies and I need some guidance, here.
Thanks in advance for any assistance, advice, soothing words, or “snap out of it” responses, and thanks for reading all the way through.